Nigerian music manager stabbed to death over wristwatch in UK

A 32-year-old Nigerian-born music manager in the United Kingdom, Emmanuel Odunlami was stabbed to death for a fake luxury watch worth £300,000 after he left an upmarket restaurant in London, the United Kingdom, a court heard.

Three robbers stole Emmanuel Odunlami’s Patek Philippe Nautilus believing it was the genuine article, the Old Bailey was told on Tuesday.

The three robbers, Quincy Ffrench, 27, Jordell Menzies, 26, and Louis Vandrose, 27, admitted robbery but denied murder in court on Wednesday.

Odunlami was stabbed to death for a fake luxury watch after a security guard Kavindu Hettiarachchi spotted the timepiece — which cost up to £300,000 — and filmed Odunlami wearing it outside the eatery in the City of London.

Hettiarachchi tipped off his accomplices who “waited for their prey”, chasing, catching and beating the victim who was stabbed in the heart.

One took the watch during the assault “and was heard to say, ‘Got it’,” said prosecutor Duncan Atkinson, KC.

Meanwhile, the 30-year-old Hettiarachchi has denied manslaughter while appearing in court.

Menzies, whose DNA was on the attack knife, admitted manslaughter.

Antonios Kfoury, 21, a colleague of Hettiarachchi, also denied perverting justice as it claimed he lied to police to cover for Hettiarachchi.

Prosecutor Duncan Atkinson KC said that the watch “may have not been genuine”, but was treated as such by those accused of stealing it.

He told jurors that Hettiarachchi was “an integral member of the security team” who had been hired by the events organiser Playhxuse for the private ticketed brunch and afterparty with DJ.

Mr Atkinson said: “It was part of his role to protect the safety of those, like Mr Odunlami, who were attending the event. In fact he did the opposite.”

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